All posts by tgleason

An Inquisition – Alcoholics Anonymous in Higher Education

AA has been preventing AA criticism in colleges for a long time.

“He asked, Do you think it’s a cult? I replied, I do, and I’ve given evidence to support my position. I’m not demanding that my students agree with this, but I am asking them to look at the evidence. He then said, Well, you can’t teach here. I said, Are you telling me I can’t use peer-reviewed articles from sociological journals and similar academic materials in a graduate course in psychology? Are you telling me I have to toe the line according to Alcoholics Anonymous? He replied, That’s exactly what I’m telling you.”

An Inquisition

ACLU’s History of Not Defending the Establishment Clause when it comes to AA

It’s time to stop seeing Anti-AA activists as government conspiracy theorists and take a close look at how government works.

Government is staffed by people with ideological and financial interests. They create laws that regulate or refuse to regulate industries based on private interests. The purpose of checks and balances is to protect the public from unjust law.

The US Constitution states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

The anecdote in this article is significant in that there was a clear case to be made that the state was establishing religious indoctrination by mandating Alcoholics Anonymous attendance, but due to personal and group political interests, eyes were averted from this violation of the Establishment Clause.

It is expected and understandable that people entrusted to wisely allocate public funds, and with the regulatory power to license or de-license professionals endorsed by the state will bring their personal beliefs into the equation.

The judicial branch of government protects the public from policy-makers acting unfairly in their own interests to the detriment of society. Judges can only get involved if the case is brought to their attention. A group like the ACLU is obligated by their own promises to bring these cases to the courts. In this case, it is fairly clear that the opportunity was missed, and the consequences have been the increasing ability for government agencies to protect, promote, and fund the establishment of the 12-step cult religion.

Atheist Challenges Order to Attend Alcoholics Anonymous Meetings

One ACLU lawyer neglected to attack AA under the the Establishment clause and later admitted she was an AA member.

“[Ellen, that’s when we first began to disagree. You wanted to stick with a free exercise clause argument. I wanted you to include the establishment clause. I felt some satisfaction when Jack Schwartz, the AG’s assistant, asked you why you weren’t arguing the establishment clause. You got mad at me and became stubborn. I later realized you didn’t want to endanger people’s access to AA. Later you told me, as if in a confession, that you’d gone to AA for quite a while. You seemed surprised that I didn’t care. We disagreed on a lot of things after that. That’s something I always valued in our relationship. That we could disagree and get angry at one another and still be friends.]” -Jeffrey A. Schaler, Ph.D.

“As an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union in Maryland, Ms. Luff successfully argued in 1988 that court-ordered attendance at meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous violated the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees religious freedom.”
– From the Washington Post Obit.

Elements of the Surgeon General’s report on Facing Addiction suggest that the Department of Health and Human Services needs to be brought to court for neglecting concern for civil rights related to religion.

Disrupted Physician

Disrupted Physician is one of my favorite whistleblower sites. Michael Langan is exposing nationwide fraud in Physicians Health Programs, and his work has inspired many other doctors and nurses subjected to medical license extortion to speak up and speak out against irrational authority — a pretty hot topic these days!

His case involves fraudulent drug test results and suppression of evidence in addition to the clear Establishment Clause violation described in this document: BRM_and_PHS_Must_Offer_Secular_Alternatives_to_AA_NA_in_Disciplinary_Contracts.pdf.

Marty Mann and the Disease Theory

Here’s a really interesting article in The Atlantic about how Marty Mann promoted the disease concept of addiction in order to get doctors to promote AA.

“Mann’s reply to Armstrong was both fascinating and revealing. She agreed with Armstrong regarding the inefficacy of conventional medicine regarding alcoholism; she also vouchsafed her commitment to AA and its less-than-generous opinion of conventional treatment enterprises. “Not that I, as a dyed-in-the-wool AA,” she wrote to Armstrong in reply, “believe that clinics, or any other medical or psychiatric means can straighten out very many “alkies” (although I know it can in some instances, here and there) but I do believe that the average individual will more readily go into a clinic to find out what to do for what ails them than they will investigate a layman’s organization such as ours [AA]. And also I believe that the very presence of a clinic will emphasize and advertise to the uninitiated that alcoholism is a disease which is to be treated, not hidden or punished.”

And here is a fascinating intellectual history of addiction as disease, Addiction as Accomplishment: The Discursive Construction of Disease by CRAIG REINARMAN —

“In 1942, the Alcoholism Movement was founded by Marty Mann, a public relations executive and former ‘‘drunk’’, and others. By 1944, she joined with Dr. E.M. Jellinek at Yale to create an organization whose purpose was to popularize the disease concept by putting it on a scientific footing. Note the chronology: science was not the source of the concept but a resource for promoting it. This organization later became the National Council on Alcoholism (NCA). Their goal was to create a new ‘‘scientific’’ approach that would allow them to get beyond the old, moralistic ‘‘wet’’ versus ‘‘dry’’ battle lines of the Temperance and Prohibition period (Roizen, 1991). While there were a few scientists doing research on alcohol in the 1930s, the bulk of the scientific research that Mann and her allies hoped would be the basis for their new disease concept had not yet been done. Indeed, they hoped the NCA would generate contributions needed to fund that research. The 1942 ‘‘Manifesto’’ of the Alcoholism Movement clearly stated that they sought to ‘‘inculcate’’ into public opinion the idea that alcoholics were ‘‘sick’’, and therefore ‘‘not responsible’’ for their drinking and its consequences, and were thus deserving of medical treatment (Anderson, 1942; Roizen, 1991; Room & Collins, 1983).”

Involuntarily Institutionalized, No Stated Reason

Last month I talked about how the police came to my house at around 5am and handcuffed me, taking me to a mental institution where I spent five days.

Today I find that Medi-Cal is not going to pay for this, because there was no medical or psychiatric reason for me to be there. The police would not tell me who made the call. I have been filing complaints for nearly three years and they have not been addressed. A New York State DoE investigator specifically told me that they “don’t look into the AA thing”, so I filed a complaint with the Justice Center against the NYS Department of Education.

How do I get my 5 days back, and who had me committed in the first place? All questions that cannot be answered by anyone, apparently.

denial

More Misuse of OASAS Money to Promote 12-Step Goals

If you follow OASAS’ Facebook feed, you’ll see that they are constantly promoting and funding Alcoholics Anonymous-based rehabs and “outreach” programs. This is most likely illegal and the public needs to know that OASAS is suppressing informed consent when they do this, not to mention violating the First Amendment by using government funds to establish religion.

Impact of Federal Court Decision Concerning Alcoholics Anonymous On Government Funded Providers

Here’s a recent one: NEW YORK OASAS LAUNCHES NEW INITIATIVE TO HELP CONNECT MORE NEW YORKERS TO ADDICTION SERVICES IN NEW YORK CITY

What they don’t mention is that this is going to promote this 12-step agenda. Notice “favorable outcomes, such as increased participation in 12-step meetings”, as if that is the REAL goal via abstinence. This proves that it is Twelve Step Facilitation with 2 goals: acceptance of powerlessness, and surrender to God (the stated goals of TSF)

“There isn’t a lot of research in the field of recovery, Provet admitted. But there is still evidence that promoting some of its components is effective in preventing relapse. “Although quantitative research on the overall efficacy of recovery coaching and personal recovery plans is sparse, many of its components and effects have been researched and supports using this approach with our target population,” said Provet, citing in particular the work of Bill White. “Recovery coaches, 12-step programs, spirituality, and social and community support are integral to sustaining recovery. Increased goal-oriented thinking was positively correlated to length of time abstinent, quality of life, and self-efficacy,” he said. Maintaining motivation and self-efficacy for abstinence and increasing active coping post treatment were predictive of more favorable outcomes, such as increased participation in 12-step meetings.

“Asked how long people will stay in the recovery support program, Provet said the goal will be for each mentee to receive services over a period of six to 12 months to accomplish the goals set forth in the individual recovery plan. “Accomplishing each goal will, over time, build each mentee’s recovery capital to help sustain their recovery,” he said. “Our goal is also to provide each mentee, based on their progress in their recovery, with the opportunity to become mentors in the OHROCS program further sustaining their recovery support, this time through their mentoring of others in early recovery.”

Gamblers Anonymous meetings, NYCPG Funded by the State

“Problem gambling education also will be provided to patients at these six ATCs [Addiction Treatment Centers]. Several ATCs also have established connections with local Gambler’s Anonymous (GA) chapters, who will provide GA meetings on site at the ATCs.”

You can now go in to ‘treatment’ for substance use disorder and come out powerless over gambling, or at least telling everybody you know that they might be.

NYS OASAS ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF SERVICES FOR NEW YORKERS STRUGGLING WITH PROBLEM GAMBLING

Here’s why that’s probably illegal Impact of Federal Court Decision Concerning Alcoholics Anonymous On Government Funded Providers

HHS Office for Civil Rights Policy loses its “religion” — or — This is is not the kind of “oversight” the rehab industry needs

Hello,

In Surgeon General Murthy’s report on Facing Addiction, I noticed that the word “religion” was not used in OCR’s notice.

or religion

The word “sex” WAS in this notice, but not “religion”, so the decision to leave “religion” out might be slightly more certain than:

last year after having no luck in getting New York state *at any level* to acknowledge precedented Establishment Clause violations (religious coercion) in 12-step treatment, I received a similar response from Sarah Brown, Deputy Director, where the wording was changed to “under certain circumstances, sex and religion [are protected].

This was not the response I expected, because on the OCR website where I initially filed my complaint, it says “religion” on the complaint form.

My question is: Under what circumstances is discrimination based on religion allowable, and is “addiction treatment” one of those circumstances? It does seem to be, based on the notice in the Facing Addiction report. If so, why?

Does it have anything to do with the 12-step programs, which the same notice says are not specifically endorsed by HHS?

http://notpowerless.com/new-york-state-education-department-investigator-admits-policy-of-willful-negligence/

—-

“Thank you for contacting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR). Please note that OCR has limited jurisdiction to investigate complaints alleging discrimination on the basis of religion. This jurisdiction depends on the particular program and the funding source to pay for the program.”

Me: “Thank you for your response. Are there any documents I can read regarding OCR’s jurisdiction, such as which funding sources prohibit discrimination on the basis of religion and which ‘particular programs’ might be exempt from investigation? “

“This information is not on OCR’s website and is not available to the public. It is information that is used in OCR’s investigation process.”

Me: “Is it available via a FOIL request?”

“You can request anything under FOIA, but it is likely that the request would be denied because it is part of OCR’s investigative process.”

Me: “Thank you. Perhaps you could answer about a specific situation with NYS OASAS funding Gamblers Anonymous indoctrination in the course of substance abuse treatment, or using Gamblers Anonymous meetings on site, or funding the non-profit organization called the Council for Problem Gambling which promotes GA meetings and OASAS state-run GA-based rehab.”

“I don’t investigate complaints or have access to the information to make this determination. If you have further questions regarding your complaint, it should be directed to OCR’s Central Intake Unit which investigate your complaint.”

Plausible deniability

Alcoholics Anonymous lives in a state of ‘plausible denial’.

AA is not ‘technically’ responsible for anything, most especially the unfortunate circumstances or deaths of tradition violators.

AA isn’t a person; how can AA be responsible? No individual technically speaks for AA. AA is technically not the Big Book, technically not the meetings, not technically its members or its board, not technically the 12-steps, technically not a religion, technically not ‘treatment’, while also technically not medical fraud, and the Surgeon General technically doesn’t promote it, Twelve-Step Facilitation is technically not AA, the Oxford Houses and 90% of the rehab industry is not technically AA. The New Recovery Advocacy Movement is not technically AA either, and NYS OASAS technically is not an AA front group.

Plausible deniability is the ability for persons (typically senior officials in a formal or informal chain of command) to deny knowledge of or responsibility for any damnable actions committed by others (usually subordinates in an organizational hierarchy) because of a lack of evidence that can confirm their participation, even if they were personally involved in or at least willfully ignorant of the actions. In the case that illegal or otherwise disreputable and unpopular activities become public, high-ranking officials may deny any awareness of such acts in order to insulate themselves and shift blame onto the agents who carried out the acts, as they are confident that their doubters will be unable to prove otherwise. The lack of evidence to the contrary ostensibly makes the denial plausible, that is, credible, although sometimes it merely makes it unactionable. The term typically implies forethought, such as intentionally setting up the conditions to plausibly avoid responsibility for one’s (future) actions or knowledge. In some organizations, legal doctrines such as command responsibility exist to hold major parties responsible for the actions of subordinates involved in heinous acts and nullify any legal protection that their denial of involvement would carry.”

-wikipedia